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New TRAX line to airport could affect taxi businesses

By Alex Cabrero | Posted - Feb 27th, 2013 @ 7:02pm


13 photos

SALT LAKE CITY — The TRAX line to the airport is just two months away from completion and Salt Lake taxi cab companies are wondering what the new project will mean for their business.

Some drivers are worried and others don't think it will hurt their business. The big question for them is will a lot of passengers who would have taken a cab use TRAX instead?

"I just don't see it being an impact to our business," said Michael Norvell of Ute Cab.


I just don't see it being an impact to our business.

–Michael Norvell, Ute Cab


Norvell works for Ute Cab and says most passengers using taxis to go to and from the airport are business people who need to get directly to their hotel or meeting. He says he thinks they don't have time for mass transit, especially with lots of luggage.

"When you walk out the door the taxi cab is right there, ready to go," Norvell said. "We'll take your credit card, we'll load your bags, we'll unload your bags."

Over at Yellow Cab, director Don Barron says they're not too sure what to think about the new TRAX line.

"We will lose a little bit of business to TRAX. I don't know how much until we find out," Barron said.

He also thinks convenience is everything.

"It's hard to get on and off the TRAX with a lot of bags," Barron said. "Cab drivers will load the bags and unload them for you."

Not all travelers feel that way.

"If there was a light rail, it would make things a lot easier," said Paul Rocchio, who lives in Washington, D.C., and is currently in Salt Lake on business.


I use light rail all the time, and once it's hooked up to the airport, yes, I plan on using it.

–Ron Ketelsen, Salt Lake City resident


Ron Ketelsen lives in Salt Lake and uses the airport about three times a month.

"I use light rail all the time, and once it's hooked up to the airport, yes, I plan on using it," Ketelsen said.

Those are two taxi customers saying their money would go to TRAX instead of taxis.

"We might need a cab to drop you off at a TRAX stop," Barron said. "You never know."

City Cab, the third taxi service here in Salt Lake City, did not want to comment on this story.

TRAX to the airport is scheduled to begin in April.

Photos

Alex Cabrero

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